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Images of Muhammadi Ali Offer Personal Look at Kentucky's Inspirational Athlete and Citizen

The Kentucky native known as “The Greatest of All Time” is the focus of a photo exhibition opening Monday, March 11, at Western Kentucky University.

The photos of Muhammad Ali were taken by more than a dozen staff photographers for the Courier Journal, who had extensive access to Ali during his rise to fame, and later during his fight with Parkinson’s Disease.

WKU photojournalism professor Tim Broekema said the exhibition is not just for people interested in Ali’s success as a boxer.

“As someone in their 50s who’s grown up with Muhammad and the boxing scene, I’ve never really viewed Muhammad Ali as a boxer," said Broekema. "I just viewed him as just one of these very powerful characters in our life and in our society," 

The exhibition opens with a reception at 4:30 Monday afternoon at the Jody Richards Hall Gallery.

A roundtable, moderated by book editor Pat McDonough featuring Courier Joural photojournalists Keith Williams, C. Thomas Hardin and Sam Upshaw Jr., will begin at 6 p.m. Monday in the Jody Richards Hall Auditorium.

The exhibition and roundtable are open to the public. The gallery exhibition runs through May 3.

Note: The photos shown in the slideshow above are featured in the book Picture: Muhammad Ali.

Rhonda Miller joined WKU Public Radio in 2015. She has worked as Gulf Coast reporter for Mississippi Public Broadcasting, where she won Associated Press, Edward R. Murrow and Green Eyeshade awards for stories on dead sea turtles, health and legal issues arising from the 2010 BP oil spill and homeless veterans.
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